BETTENDORF, Iowa — Howard Addison Johnson, 84, Bettendorf, Iowa, peacefully passed away on Monday, Nov. 13, 2017, after an extended illness.
Howard was born on Dec. 16, 1932, the son of Howard A. and Jeanette A. (Taylor) Johnson in Princeton. He married Rita J. Vickrey on Jan. 8, 1956, in Princeton. They have three children, J. Keith Johnson, Kendall R. Johnson and Margo J. (Johnson) McInnis.
The son of a daughter of the American Revolution (DAR), his ancestry dates back to William Brewster, passenger of the Mayflower. He graduated from Manlius High School and attended Augustana College in Rock Island before entering the army, where he served in the Korean War as corporal with the 176th Armored Field and Artillery Battalion.
He was a member of the S.P.E.B.Q.S.A. Bend of the River Chorus (now Harminators), Rock Island chapter. As an accomplished musician, he played piano, was a singer/songwriter, and arranged music and coached Barbershop & Sweet Adeline quartets, as well as directing both choruses. One of his original songs, “My Little Pal,” was sung in the national contest, held on the east coast in the 1990’s. He was well known and requested for singing “The Lord’s Prayer” at many weddings. He was also known for singing a traditional song, in Swedish, “Children of the Heavenly Father” at various gatherings. He was active in his church choir and served as deacon and elder.
He was third generation in the funeral business in Bureau County. He retired from the Rock Island Arsenal. He was creative at bending barbed wire into art and woodworking, which he and his wife sold at various craft fairs throughout the United States. He loved traveling with his favorite sweety, spending time with family, watching Sunday football games, John Wayne movies and enjoying life.
Left to honor his memory are his wife, Rita, of 62 years on Jan. 8, 2018; two sons, J. Keith and Amy Johnson of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, and Kendall R. and Corinna Johnson of Davenport, Iowa; a daughter Margo J. and Chadwick McInnis of Phoenix, Ariz.; a brother-in-law, Dean Tubbs of Appleton, Minn.; seven grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; nieces, nephews, friends, neighbors and the great staff at their favorite restaurants; specifically a few who went above and beyond, and who he considered family, Amy and Polo.
He was preceded in death by his twin sister, Joan A (Johnson) Tubbs; his parents, Howard and Jeanette Johnson; twin great-grandchildren, Christian and Skylar Johnson; and a nephew, Tommy Tubbs.
Cremation rites have been accorded. His life will be celebrated at a private family service.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Burn Camp for Children 8-16 years old at Camp I AM ME (426 W NW Highway, Mt. Prospect, IL 60056) or any local children’s organization.
Online condolences may be expressed to Howard’s family by visiting his obituary at www.WeertsFH.com.